My name is Karen Jones, but I write novels using my initials, K.S. Jones.
I’ve been writing almost all of my life, usually in stolen moments between raising children, caring for elderly parents, and working a real job.
I grew up on a cotton farm in California’s Central San Joaquin Valley, the destination of thousands of families fleeing the Dust Bowl during America’s Great Depression. Our farmhouse held over five thousand books, so reading was expected and encouraged. It became my most-loved pastime, especially in the summer when I could climb up high onto the big limbs of my favorite old apricot tree and read amongst the birds. I especially loved Jack London, John Steinbeck, Ernest Hemingway, J.R.R. Tolkien, H.G. Wells, Jules Verne, Mark Twain, and many others.
In the 1960s, while attending Tipton Elementary School, I won my first writing award. I placed second in the school-wide American Legion essay contest, only being bested by my older sister, who snagged first place honors. I’ve been writing ever since.
I spent fifteen years researching and writing my Depression-era debut novel, Shadow of the Hawk, loosely based on my mother’s stories from her childhood in Arkansas. I had a few short pieces published during that time, but it wasn’t until 2014 that my writing took a giant leap forward. Early one summer morning, an email arrived announcing I’d won first place in the 2014 Short Story Contest for Southern Writers magazine. While still reveling in the moment, a second email chimed – a publisher was offering a contract on Shadow of the Hawk. That same week, two more publishing offers arrived for the same novel, and my scramble to grasp the possibilities of it all began. In 2016, my middle-grade sci-fi/fantasy titled Black Lightning was released by Mirror World Publishing, and in February 2022, my Frontier Women’s Fiction, Change of Fortune, was released by Five Star Publishing.
My home is in the beautiful Texas Hill Country, about an hour from San Antonio, where I live with my husband, Richard, and our many dogs. When I’m not writing, I love to garden, vegetables mostly, and still to this day, reading is my most-loved pastime.
My work has received several literary awards in the past few years, to which I am both humbled and honored. There are so many talented writers in the world today that any recognition or encouragement is treasured beyond measure. Thank you to all.